Air quality to worsen in Northwest as smoke returns

Tuesday, 21 Aug, 2018

A year ago saw several days of hazardous air quality in September, with Spokane pinned between wildfires to the north, south and east.

Smoke from the more than 540 active wildfires continues to impact highway and air travel.

MPCA says the smoke is expected to completely exit the state by 9 a.m. on Tuesday.

Areas such as Squamish, Whistler, Nanaimo/Parksville and Castlegar also have a 10-plus air-quality rating.

The National Weather Service in Seattle has issued air quality alerts for much of Washington state.

A new mobile app from The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality allows you to have information about your area's air quality conditions at your fingertips.

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Smoke concentrations may vary widely across the region, depending on the wind, the temperature, and wildfire activity.

Environment Canada warned that some of the particulate matter is small enough to "easily penetrate indoors" and said infants and seniors were among the people most likely to feel respiratory symptoms.

The Shovel Lake fire is considered to be one of the highest priorities for firefighters.

Another notable fire, the 633-hectare Gottfriedsen Mountain fire, was brought under control on Sunday.

The north end of Vancouver Island is covered by the advisory as well.

For general information about wildfire smoke and your health, contact HealthLink BC at 8-1-1 (toll free, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week).